HAM from fresh picnics.. update 10/21 ... MONEY ..

Discussion in 'Pork' started by daveomak, Oct 15, 2015.

  1. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    My neighborhood small grocery had fresh picnics, non enhanced, for $1.49... sooooo, 2 came home with me... Bride wanted these done with the hide on so that's what I did....

    Many, many injections of a curing brine to make them hammy... around the bones and joints and along the hide from the meat side... and everywhere else...

    I injected about 500 cc into each ham for a ~10% pump.... I used a plain brine of pickling salt, white sugar, Amesphos and cure #1... The last enhanced picnic I did was sooo good I thought fresh picnics would be a good test... They will hit the smoker in about 7 days.... AND they will be in my newly ordered stockinettes... ain't that something...

    (I have since started using soup stock for the liquid to additionally enhance the flavor of the bird.. Turkey, Chicken or Vegetable Stocks are good starts..)

    For those of you wanting to try this injection method in place of brining in a bucket, here's what I did....

    In the order recommended by a reputable source, to the water carrier for the ingredients.. picnics weighed ~ 10#'s.... 4500 ish grams....

    Weights are per 500 cc / ham
    Amesphos............ 18 grams ~0.4% (0.3-0.5% recommended)
    Sugar, white ....... 45 grams ~1%
    Salt, pickling ...... 90 grams ~2%
    Cure #1.............. . 11 grams ~153 Ppm nitrite ( edit .. OR 2 tsp for 10#'s)

    A question arose, on my previous thread, about the exclusion of using "total" weight for the calculations....

    My explanation .... Since I'm adding the individual ingredients to the meat product, and since the water will "mostly if not totally" evaporate, I don't calculate the water weight into the formula... I also didn't subtract the weight of the hide from the weight of the ham... If a slab of bacon is ~10% hide, a ham must be around 3% hide... insignificant... And then there is the leakage into the zip bag...

    All things considered, this method is more accurate than the method employed by the "HAM" manufacturers.... They mix up hundreds of gallons of cure/spice mix and randomly inject meats of different weights and thickness...

    If absorption is off by 20%, the values are still well within recommended values...

    I feel this method is more consistent, faster, less expensive and a lot more convenient than brining in a bucket... YMMV.....

    The syringe in the picture is from a jar of Cajun Injector marinade..

    ...click on pics to enlarge...

    .. ..
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2016
    foamheart, msuiceman and disco like this.
  2. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Very well done sir......  My first ham was a picnic and I gotta say its still my favorite. And I like the Amphos too.

    I'm a waiting
  3. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Looking good Dave.

    Did you order rolls of netting or just ham socks? Where from?
  4. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    Nicely detailed, Will make a great Tutorial when done. Can the same proportions be used on a fresh Ham?...JJ
  5. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Nice , Dave . I also curious about the 'socks' and a dumb question , what is 'Amphos'?
  6. tropics

    tropics Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    I will be following this nice post Dave

  7. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Amazon.... They look like they will fit nicely... not too big.... I'll know more in a week.....

  8. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I think this is a fresh ham.... hadn't been frozen or pumped... just vac packed.... Salt and sugar can be adjusted to taste.... I will adjust, if necessary, on the taste test.... might even use brown sugar next time, or add honey or maple syrup.... First go 'round I like plain for a base line...

    I chose 500 cc's of water to carry the "stuff" into the meat because store bought seems to revolve around 10% by weight... about 20-30 cc's leaked out in the tray during pumping... which I did add back to the zip bag for the 7 ish days wait... 500 cc's seemed to be about right for the size ham... You could see the ham swell... the skin swell when "perimeter" pumping... looked like "all" will be fine in the end result...

    The last picnic I did. about a month ago, was an enhanced picnic and it was delicious.. I wanted to test out a fresh ham... I hate paying $1.89 for pumped liquid...
  9. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I use it in beef sticks because nepas uses it... now I'm adding it to other stuff... The last picnic ham sure was moist and tender... the best we've ever had.....

  10. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    O KEE DO KEE..... Stand by....Thumbs Up
  11. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I think the picnics have better flavor and are more tender than back legs... Amesphos is cool stuff... I really like what it does for meats... gotta try some of the other suggestions they have on the site.....
  12. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    I am use to the old way of referring to an uncured rear leg as a fresh Ham. I never had a cured Picnic on the bone but would venture a guess that they would be great...JJ
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2015
  13. disco

    disco Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I'm watching, Dave.

  14. bmaddox

    bmaddox Master of the Pit

    I have done ham from picnics in a brine and it does tack up a ton of room in the fridge. I am very interested to see how this comes out. 
  15. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

  16. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    UPDATE.... The meat is turning pinkish... Appears about 10-15% of the injected liquid has leaked out of the meat.... That tells me the injected stuff has migrated throughout the meat... considering "MOST" of the liquid was injected around the bone, the picnic "should" be thoroughly cured... 10/15 - 10/17 2 days... 1/4" per day= 1/2"... injections ~ 1" apart.... could be done BUT.. since my last picnic was in the refer for 7 days and came out sooooo good, I'm waiting the 7 days...
    I'm really leaning toward longer times for curing, lightly smoking and longer rest periods after the smoke... I think "time" does more enhancing to the flavor and texture than credit is given....

    I am turning the hams daily so the liquid that has leaked out, and the liquid remaining inside, can migrate throughout the meat... or so it says in fine print..... somewhere.....
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2015
  17. jckdanls 07

    jckdanls 07 Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    I'm in....
  18. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    OK.... I know it's only 5 days but I couldn't wait... I also wanted to check out if 5 days was enough and do the taste comparison... even if the first picnic I did was enhanced...
    I've got Pitmasters Choice drying in the MES 30 now... I will put the legs in the smoker, while it's 275 and let it cool with the legs in it... that should warm the meat up to around 50-60 degs... perfect for absorbing smoke for the next 6-8 hours or so... 2 full rows in the AMNPS....... The smoke portion will be done at ~100-110 def. F.... Then the temp will be raised to 180-190 ish until the IT gets to 165.....

    .. ..

    The 28" bags fit nice... I think they are about maxed out with a 10# leg..... They should fit a 12# turkey....

    .. ..
  19. radioguy

    radioguy Smoking Fanatic

    Dave I'm in. Always got time for good HAM!! 🐷
  20. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Sure hope these come out good.... Should know tomorrow...

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